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tv   NBC Nightly News  NBC  November 6, 2012 6:30pm-7:00pm EST

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if you have not voted yet, again, you have about a half an hour now if you're in virginia. you have an hour and a half if you are in either maryland or the district. >> it on our broadcast here tonight from our nbc news election headquarters on democracy plaza, decision day. that means election night soon we get to learn the verdict of a nation. either another term or another president after a long and bitter campaign and a grueling fight to the finish. tonight, what we'll be looking for as the first returns start to come in. and after the storm in the cold, without power after losing so much, they came to cast their ballots. tonight the extraordinary election effort to make sure everyone gets to vote while so much human suffering continues. nightly news this election night, decision 2012 begins now.
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good evening from our spectacular location here tonight at rockefeller plaza, in the center of new york city, transformed for the evening into democracy plaza. our nbc news election night headquarters. across this country today from the first light of day in montana, americans voted. they voted in temporary tents and by flashlight in the rockaways here in new york, where after all an entire region remains crippled and this will remain another cold, dark night for upwards of a million people. the first polls have already closed. more are closing in the next 30 minutes. people are still lining up to vote tonight in the state that may be the greatest prize of all, ohio. the candidates are spent after
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an exhaust iing campaign. now it all comes down to tonight. and just after midnight in keeping with a grand american tradition, the people of dixville notch, new hampshire cast the first votes in the nation and voted to a 5/5 tie. the first tie vote in that small town's history. we can only guess what that means for how late we'll be at this tonight. our team is in place all over the country and here in new york. we want to begin with our white house correspondent kristen welker covering the president in chicago. kristen, good evening. >> reporter: brian, good evening to you. the obama campaign is energized tonight, but also a bit wistful. after four years in office, the candidate once known for hope and change is counting on voters to stay the course. >> my name is barack obama, you know, the president? >> reporter: president obama campaigning tirelessly in the final hours before the polls closed, stopping by a chicago
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campaign office, to stress the importance of turnout. >> we have to round up the votes. >> reporter: since saturday, he's kept up a break neck campaign pace, logging more than 7,000 miles aboard air force one. making a dozen stops over eight states and granting 20 interviews to local stations. >> i hope we have a big turnout in iowa. >> reporter: after a long fight it came down to a sentimental journey to the packed center of des moines, iowa. >> i've come back to iowa one more time to ask for your vote. >> this is where our movement for change began. >> reporter: and it didn't surprise even veteran aids when the president reached a certain portion of his emotional speech with his voice strained. >> that shows you what one voice can do. >> reporter: and teers flowing down his cheech. it was the last event of his last presidential campaign. >> as you know, this is a pretty emotional time for us, because this is the final event of my
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husband's final campaign. >> reporter: today our nbc affiliate in des moines asked the president about his tears. >> a photographer got a little tear going down your left cheek. was that the cold out there or emotion? >> you know, probably a mix of both. i have to say that being back in des moines, thinking about all the folks in iowa who had worked so hard on my campaign back in '08 and then to see them still working hard back in 2012, it made me feel deeply moved and honored to have been able to be on this journey. >> reporter: this final stretch has taken on the feel of a family reunion, with aids from 2008 rejoining, some growing good luck beards, others wearing good luck charms. the president's tradition, a game of basketball with some of his closest friends and advisers. in fact we have a shot of him with one of the folks who played
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today, former illinois state treasurer. president obama will have dinner with his family tonight at his chicago home before watching election returns with the rest of his team. >> sports is a superstitious business. kristen welker starting us off. thanks. now to the other side, peter alexander traveling with the romney campaign. and tonight that means headquarters, back home in boston. peter, good evening. >> reporter: brian, good evening to you. within the last hour, mitt romney just landed back here in boston after wrapping up his final campaign swing. tonight he's going to watch those returns alongside his wife ann and all five of their sons. during that last flight he spoke to reporters and said he was very proud of the campaign, adding, and i quote, we put it all on the field. at the end of an exhausting quest for the white house. mitt romney cast his ballot
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alongside his wife ann in their home state of massachusetts. his mind was on the midwest. >> i feel great about ohio. >> reporter: governor romney went straight from the polls to his campaign plane with paul ryan. >> i'm awed by the spirit and enthusiasm, support, energy, it's just amazing. thank you. >> reporter: while mr. romney thanks volunteers, later fueling up on fast food. it was a near traffic jam on the tarmac in cleveland. air force two carrying the vice president to a late campaign swing of his own touched down behind the governor's jet. he appeared almost overwhelmed by the reception in a state until now he largely ignored. >> that's when you know you're going to win. >> reporter: mr. ronlny said he didn't want to look back with anything other than satisfaction about his campaign. last night the romneys were
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greeted by a rock star's welcome in new hampshire. a three minute ovation in the state where the former massachusetts governor kicked off this campaign more than 500 days ago. >> i have a clear and unequivocal message. with the right leadership, america's going to come roaring back. >> reporter: late today after a bitter campaign, mr. romney struck a conciliatory tone. >> the president has run a strong campaign. i believe he's a good man and wish him well, but it's time for new direction. it's time for a better tomorrow. >> reporter: from that conversation with reporters tonight, it is clear that governor romney deeply believes he is going to win tonight. so confident apparently, he says he's only written one speech, a victory speech. >> peter alexander, romney headquarters in boston, where it's going to be a long night. let's fly across the plaza,
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a location we're going to be checking in with a lot, chuck todd, the keeper of the numbers. so chuck, give us a viewer's guide in effect, a lot of folks tuning in now will be with us the rest of the way out. what to look for tonight? >> good news for you presidential political junkies, before 9:00, look at how many states in the battlegrounds where the polls will be closed? six of the sort of ten states we've been eyeing in either direction. the first big one comes up in a few minutes, the state of virginia. there's certain things to watch in the state of virginia. we expect it to be a tight race. if it's a good night for romney, is it something we're able to call by 9:00 or 10:00? is it a good night for the president, does he get it in his column early. i've done all these scenarios. there's not many romney scenarios that don't include the state of virginia. two others i want to circle here. pennsylvania and north carolina. these are states that democrats
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believe -- something that's going to be in the president's column, north carolina something that's going to be in romney's column. what if they're too close to call at 9:00. if pennsylvania's too close to call, good news for romney. if north carolina is, good news for the president. >> we'll be checking in along the way. thanks a lot. we're joined now by three former nbc news chief white house correspondents, andrea mitchell, david gregory, savannah guthrie, who will be with us the rest of the way, of course. same question to chuck. what are the moments you'll be looking for tonight? >> the keys to the game here, as it were, two teams, and is obama's defense better than romney's offense? obama's got to protect the midwest tonight, he can do that, the states he won in 2008, ohio, iowa, wisconsin, he gets a second term. is romney's offense better. can he expand the battleground map? if he does that, he has his shot. what does the vote and the voter
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look like? how white is it? how nonwhite is it? what's the gender gap like, and what about men, white men in particular, for one side or the other. we're going to be paying a lot of attention on that. >> we got to barnstorm around on air force one for about 24 hours last week. what struck me, it's not '08 and you and i were talking about this before we went on the air, in so many ways. >> when you think about 2008, that was the night this country elected the first african-american president. four years later, if you look at the data, this is a country more racially divided politically than it has been ever before. the president is winning margins with nonwhites, upwards of 66%, losing whites by 21%. and that fact alone may be determinative of what the electorate looks like tonight. i think about how divided this country is, along racial lines, gender lines and political lines. we know this is going to be an
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extremely close race no matter what happens. what will that tell us for how we'll govern the next four years. >> to andrea mitchell, you're covering the senate and house races tonight. there's a lot of closely watched contests? >> speaking of partisanship, we're going to be watching to see whether the democrats can retain control of the senate. they have more to defend. the republicans have some self-inflicted wounds that they themselves would acknowledge with todd akin and richard murdoch, the candidates who spoke so controversially about rape. we're going to be watching women, 18 of these candidates in both parties in the senate are women. we're watching the house, of course. republicans expected to retain control of the house. what's going to happen to the tea party and the partisanship in the house. >> andrea mitchell wrapping up our purely political subtext tonight. by this time tomorrow night, this plaza will likely be full of swirling snow from a huge
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storm that's going to add insult to injury to this region. already for millions of voters here in the northeast, this election day includes such a painful subtext as the suffering from hurricane sandy continues for so many people. ron allen's been covering that, he's across the river from new york city in hard hit hoboken, new jersey. ron, good evening. >> reporter: good evening to you, brian. this city hall has been the center for relief operations here. today they added voting to the long list of things they're trying to accomplish. for voters in new york and new jersey, still battling the aftermath of the storm, there was frustration and confusion, and a huge problem caused by e-mail voting. election day got off to a chaotic start in communities outside new york city that still don't have power. when voters arrived at polling places that were not ready. >> it's a disgrace. i've been here three times, they finally got machines in, now the machines are jammed up. >> reporter: in manhattan, where
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the storms effects still linger, the lines were long. in queens, tents were set up outside unusable polling places. shuttle buses carried other voters to alternative sites. throughout the metro area, some who turned out early even used flashlights. any means possible to have their vote counted. >> that's the only frightening part. there's a lot of people that just don't have positions to come and vote. >> reporter: registered voters could cast ballots at any polling place. in new jersey, anyone displaced by the storm could vote by e-mail or fax. an unprecedented move that overwhelmed election offices. frustrated voters who could not get ballots vented on social media. voting in new jersey is a disaster, said one tweet. late today the governor made it clear, e-mail voting is limited. >> you have been displaced from your home because of the storm. get your butt up and go vote at your polling place. >> reporter: buildings normally used for voting served many
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rolls. in hoboken, voters lined up at one side of the high school, while on the other side, storm victims lined up for emergency supplies. and many still plan to vote. >> i'm still going to vote. that's not going to change anything. >> reporter: late today because of that huge backlog, the deadline to vote by e-mail was extended to friday night at 8:00 p.m. even before that move critics were warning of voter fraud. and legal experts say all this will land the state of new jersey in court. brian? >> ron allen across the way in hoboken tonight, ron? our justice correspondent pete williams has been watching for all reports of irregularities at the polls today. he reports that so far things have gone fairly well for the most part. he'll be part of our election night coverage tonight. however, one incident quickly went viral starting this morning. it happened to a voter in pennsylvania today as he filmed himself pushing the electronic
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screen, the obama button, the machine checked off romney's name instead. he eventually figured out how to touch a screen in such a way that allowed him to choose the candidate of his choice. he reported the problem to poll workers. when our broadcast continues, this other big story we're following, the continuing suffering from sandy, and how that has led to a vital new mission for the u.s. marines. ♪ [ male announcer ] it's time for medicare open enrollment. are you ready? time to compare plans and see what's new. you don't have to make changes, but it's good to look. maybe you can find better coverage, save money, or both. and check out the preventive benefits you get after the health care law. ♪ medicare open enrollment. now's the time.
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we're back, this was the scene in the far rockaway section of queens in new york city today. hundreds lined up to get food and water from the national guard and nypd. among the items being handed out. blankets from the new york marathon that was cancelled. in one area particularly hard hit, staten island. the problems are piling up. when you have a problem, send in the marines, well, they did, as stephanie gosk found out there today. >> reporter: marines on patrol. this season thele monday province, it's the storm ravaged streets of long island. 50 marines in a community that need the muscle. especially the merchants. >> it's a huge job.
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they said, no problem, we can do it. >> reporter: a kindergarten teacher can't talk about her home without crying. russian immigrants, they worked for years to save enough money to buy their house. demolition is the only way to save what's left. >> of course, it's a big help. we can't do it by ourself. >> reporter: this is the kind of work that is needed all along this block. people are coming by to help out, but they're charging $3,000 to do what these marines are doing in here for free. >> reporter: in just an hour, the job was done. >> when i walked through these streets, it's like nothing i ever saw before. these homes were ripped off the foundation, fires, floods, winds. everything damaged this place so bad. >> reporter: they said at camp lejeune they were getting ready to deploy again to the middle east when they got the call to come to staten eye land. >> everyone's thankful to be here. >> reporter: the marines
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returned to their chopper to fly back to their ship. they will be on the ground here again tomorrow. this debris field behind me is now a 24 hour a day operation. the pile already big is going to get a lot bigger, brian. >> stephanie, i'm sitting here thinking you've been shot at while covering marines around the world. at least you're in the more hospitable climate of new york. there's this other storm on the way. by this time tomorrow night we could be seeing bands of snow through new york. the problem is the coastline, there are already mandatory evacuations underway in some jersey shore beach communities. the low lying one where the dunes -- the protection is gone, washed away. jim cantore is with us for an update on the severity of the storm. good evening. >> it's already coming to fruition, you can see it just
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off the coast here. these high clouds screaming north to where it's going to be another cold night tonight in new england. and these storm ravaged area. this model is going to give us an idea of what the storm is going to do. possibly tomorrow morning, no precipitation on the coast yet. it won't be long after that, look what happens during the evening brian. we change the rain over to snow, even in new york city, the hard hit jersey shore, across long island as well. the wind, surge and now the snow to add insult to injury. nine days after sandy. >> unbelievable. we'll talk to you next right back here tomorrow night, jim cantore, thanks. we'll take a break. in a moment, what voters are telling us mattered most to them as they left the polls today. [ ] are you sure you can fit in there? [ chuckles ] ♪ ♪ [ male announcer ] around view monitor with bird's-eye view. nice work. [ male announcer ] introducing the all-new nissan pathfinder.
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will be just off the ice with voters opinions. >> do you think things in this country today are generally going in the right direction or seriously on the wrong track. early exit polls show voters are a bit more negative than positive. but not by much. 52% believe it's going in the wrong direction. let's compare these numbers to previous elections. george w. bush ran for a second term in 2004. at the time about half the country believed things were going in the right direction. by 008, a record 75% of the voters said the nation was on the wrong track. that is when we saw the economic meltdown, the republicans lost the white house. in 2012, the national mood has improved a lot in four years. it's a bit more negative than positive. will it be enough to help
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president obama keep his job? stay tuned? >> tamaran, thanks. we're just moments away from poll closings in several states. we're back after this. [ female announcer ] research suggests cell health plays a key role throughout our lives. one a day women's 50+ is a complete multivitamin designed for women's health concerns as we age. it has more of 7 antioxidants to support cell health. one a day 50+. hi, i just switched jobs, and i want to roll over my old 401(k) into a fidelity ira.
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first big poll closings just minutes away, that includes the state of virginia. our special election night coverage begins just after this break. we'll be with you all night long. this is it in a few minutes. so get comfortable. but for now, that's it for us for "nightly news." our special coverage just moments away.


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